PM Modi on Friday said fitness and not age would be the criteria to scrap old vehicles. Private vehicles of more than 20-year vintage and commercial vehicles older than 15 years will be scrapped if they don’t pass the fitness test.
While launching the National Vehicle Scrapping Policy, Modi said the move would help create wealth from waste, a concept followed in developed countries, and called for India to work towards “clean, congestion free and convenient mobility” in the 21st century.
However, many old vehicles in Delhi-NCR won’t get the benefit as their age, and not fitness, has been made the criterion for retirement by NGT and the Supreme Court.
Union road transport minister, Nitin Gadkari had earlier said the Centre will take legal advice on whether it should seek the review of NGT and SC order after announcement of the policy.
Highlighting the need to protect the environment and reduce exploitation of natural resources, Modi said, “Rare metals are already rare. But who knows even the metals in abundance will also become rare,” as he added that the impact of climate change is now being felt by all. He said the generation of metal meant for vehicle manufacturing from scrapped vehicles will save huge amounts being paid for import of scrap while pointing out that reuse is also a way to cut down on exploitation of natural resources.
India imported scrap material worth Rs 23,000 crore last year, the PM said. Union road transport and highways minister, Nitin Gadkari said the roll out of the long awaited policy will increase the supply of raw materials at low cost for vehicle manufacturing as the scrapped materials can be reused.
Gadkari said nearly one crore vehicles have been found without valid fitness certificates and registration certificates. Union transport secretary Giridhar Aramane said the pollution concerns may force courts and state administration to ban old vehicles as he pitched for the need to set up more vehicle scrapping centres in the country.
Earlier, the PM also said the new policy will promote a circular economy and make the process of economic development more sustainable and environment-friendly. “The policy, aimed at recycling old and unfit vehicles, will give a new identity to India’s mobility and auto sector,” he added.